I sleep like the dead at night. Russell says it’s because I’m a soulless harpy, incapable of feeling “normal” sensations like guilt or regret… and he’s actually onto something. While some of my personal indulgences may not have been everyone’s cup of ethical tea (we’ll brand it Moral Grey), I’ve tried very hard to ensure they’ve only affected/harmed yours truly. By separating this adult world from my children, I’m able to keep a clean conscience and prevent my mind from prattling on like bad, self-deprecating (i.e. teenage) poetry when it should be sleeping.
As implied, then, the only time I feel guilty for my choices is when they pertain to my wee ones. Example, last night my daughter erupted into a fitful rage of tearful, volatile goodness because I wouldn’t take her to the movies with her brother. Never mind it was meant as a special occasion just for him. Never mind she already had her special occasion on Monday, when momma spent one of her invaluable vacation days to chaperone a field trip. Never mind her dad took her on a shopping spree the following day for no greater reason than she asked him to. None of it mattered. It wasn’t that she was jealous her sibling getting individual treatment, it’s that her world can’t process the lack of a consolation prize. People are not allowed to win at life unless she shares the podium.
Does that sound spoiled? It is. Why did it get like this? Because it was no longer possible for me to stay at home—not with the way my ex and I were burning through money. I had to put my three-year-old in daycare (after five years of being a full-time mom), and the guilt of going back to work made me condescend to her every, frivolous demand. Her room (pictured above) is not cleanable, not because I won’t make her tidy it up, but because the sheer volume of crap she owns exceeds the limit of available closet, drawer and shelf space. I turned my cheek at so much, when I should’ve been smacking the shit out of hers. Even Russell gave her the words “please” and “thank you” for her birthday, after witnessing how she barked orders at me from the dinner table.
But these are not the wistful musings of a failed mother. I raised two emotionally-healthy kids, and I will absolutely raise three. I see the spark of a wonderful, interesting adult in there, I’ve just sent my precious girl on a longer path to discovering it. This is entirely my fault, and one of the few things that leaves me restless. That nun I hip-checked in the salad line at Souplantation should’ve known better: those are Kim’s croutons. Where’s your messiah now, bitch?
Guilty Mommy Melts
Prepare 1 pound ground beef for hamburgers as explained here.
- 1–2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 shallots, thinly sliced
- 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp white wine vinegar
- 8 slices sourdough bread
- softened butter
- 8 slices swiss cheese
- spicy brown mustard
Prepare ground beef with seasoning as outlined in the link above. While beef is marinating, heat olive oil in a saute pan and add onions, shallots and tomato. Cook until onions are caramelized. Stir in sugar and vinegar, then remove from heat. Form ground beef into patties that are slightly larger than the bread slices, but the same shape. Grill or fry burgers until desired doneness. Butter one side of each of the bread slices. Heat a griddle over a medium flame and place four of the bread slices on the griddle, butter side down. (If you don’t know this you probably shouldn’t be cooking with fire.) Top each slice of bread with hamburger patty, two slices of cheese and a heaping mound of the sautéed vegetables. Place second slice of bread on top and press down with a spatula. Grill until the cheese is melted, turning when the bread is a nice golden brown. Serve with mustard.
Actually, I’m going to expand my guilty conscience to include all family members. My mom reads this blog, and the fear of her loving disapproval is why it remains PG-13. Hence, I make sure to only write “fuck” once per post. And there it is.
TWTG says, “You won’t be able to slap me from the bottom of the well.”